Sustainably in - 8 March 2024

The environment, a masculine noun... but the ecological transition is female!

I'm on page 46 of the Sustainability Alphabet when I receive the Outlook reminder: in 15 minutes I have the meeting on the progress of our corporate Sustainability Plan.

I enter the green room, I'm the first one. Shortly after, Elena and Giulia arrive. Here's Marianna! Then Stefania. Following them, Ebe and Sonia enter; finally, the colleagues from the communication office, Giò, Anna, and Susana.

As they sit down, open their notebooks, carefully choose the pen to use and gather their various prints and notes, I look at them with great esteem and admiration.

10 women in a room, 10 women dealing with sustainability. 10 educational backgrounds, 10 professionals, 10 experiences and skills, 10 awarenesses, but all attentive, motivated and interested in sustainability issues. There are the scientists, the “engineers”, those who care for the health and well-being of workers and those who recognize the power and strength of communication with the utmost attention to avoiding greenwashing.

Just a snapshot of our Group, a group where women are not an option, but an opportunity.

From this definitely incomplete but sufficient list, a reflection arises in me: and if the ecological transition were a woman?

Recent studies, including the investigation conducted by AstraRicerche on behalf of Comieco on a sample of 1,206 respondents, highlight an interesting phenomenon: the female gender seems to show a greater sensitivity to environmental issues and a higher propensity to act to reduce the impact of human activity on the planet.

According to the collected data, 85% of the interviewed women recognize a greater inclination to virtuous behaviors regarding the environment. What is surprising is that even 76% of the male interviewees confirm this trend, acknowledging the greater sensitivity of women to environmental issues.

Women not only desire it, but they put it into practice: even according to the results of the Women's Forum in 2021, based on a sample of almost 10,000 individuals from the G20 countries, there is evidence of a significant change in women's habits to address climate change.

This commitment seems to be recognized: in fact, according to AstraRicerche, it's men themselves who declare (57.8%) that a greater female presence in top positions in politics and entrepreneurship would mark a turning point in the commitment to environmental protection.

However, women still remain underrepresented in decision-making roles. Just think of the European parliaments, where the percentage of women is less than 50%, or the national ministers responsible for the environment and climate change, where female representation is 32.2%.

However, something is changing, especially in the new generations. For example, have you heard of Giulia Marzetti? The representation of how the potential of women can be applied in the field of STEM disciplines (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), addressing strong cultural and gender resistance in these scientific subjects.

The same European Commission has stressed that STEM disciplines are "essential for driving the dual transition to a green and digital economy in a time of rapid technological innovation".

Speaking of mathematical and scientific subjects, while I was immersed in all these thoughts, Elena has just projected a very complex dendrogram… Jo Squillo and Sabrina Salerno were right, beyond the legs there is more!

Chiara Pontoni
Sustainability Manager Gesteco

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